Saturday, December 31, 2011

words rated for emotional content

In these billions of words is not a view of any individual's state of mind. Instead, like billions of moving atoms add up to the overall temperature of a room, billions of words used to express what people are feeling resolve into a view of the relative mood of large groups.
These billions of words contain everything from "the" to "pancakes" to "suicide." To get a sense of the emotional gist of various words, the researchers used a service from Amazon called Mechanical Turk. On this website, they paid a group of volunteers to rate, from one to nine, their sense of the "happiness" -- the emotional temperature -- of the ten thousand most common words in English. Averaging their scores, the volunteers rated, for example, "laughter" at 8.50, "food" 7.44, "truck" 5.48, "greed" 3.06 and "terrorist" 1.30.



Some common normative terms are: ought; duty; obligation; permissible; and forbidden. When applied to actions, appropriate and inappropriate are normative terms. [Note that not all NORMATIVE terms are MORAL terms. For example, ought can be used in a NON-MORAL, PRUDENTIAL sense, as in: One ought to eat nutritious foods.]

Simple, but maybe not all that original. The colors white and black have carried layers of moral meaning since long before Americans’ infatuation with cowboys and automobiles. Indeed, some scientists believe that our conception of blackness and sin may be entangled with a fundamental and ancient fear of dirt and contagion that remains deeply wired in our neurons today.

D - Europe's debt crisis is referred to overtly as a contagion. I guess an analogy of flames and firewalls was not incendiary enough.


A connotation is a commonly understood subjective cultural or emotional association that some word or phrase carries, in addition to the word's or phrase's explicit or literal meaning, which is its denotation.
A connotation is frequently described as either positive or negative, with regards to its pleasing or displeasing emotional connection. For example, a stubborn person may be described as being either strong-willed or pig-headed; although these have the same literal meaning (stubborn), strong-willed connotes admiration for the level of someone's will (a positive connotation), while pig-headed connotes frustration in dealing with someone (a negative connotation).

D - Greta Vosper generated 2 sets of words for the Church. The 1st was positive (community, hope) and the other negative (judgement - even salvation I think - it implies the need for saving).

Compare denomination, sect and cult.
There is a hidden soc-psy appeal to popularity.

Or religious person versus atheist.
Contrast with atheistic person and religionist.
Only 1 side gets to be a person.

1 comment:

dino snider said...

English tends to be emotionally positive.
D - I don't think CVN will be. It will be inherently neutral - the binary opposites of plus/minus of a property require an additional indicator.
I have pondered that a 'day' is 24 hours. But day is one half, and night the other - a default to the 'plus'.